Rebecca McCray works as a marketing consultant, liquor entrepreneur and owner of a small ranch In Oklahoma that employs five people. Functioning to fulfill multiple roles provides her with both rewards and success. From the reward perspective, she enjoys the freedom of making decisions and utilizing her skills without being limited. Since entrepreneurship comes with challenges, overcoming the challenges provides fulfillment for Rebecca. Despite being rewarded as an entrepreneur, numerous challenges are imminent before success is achieved. The challenges include changing environments such as crimes that negatively impacts businesses. To overcome the challenges, Rebecca has taken precautions such as insuring her business, employing security personnel, advertising the business using various media, hiring the right people for the job and training them. Finally, she gives her perception about the factors she considers vital for the success of her business. The combination of the rewards and challenges has molded Rebecca to become one of the best entrepreneurs of her times.
Unlike being employed, being an entrepreneur provides many rewards as demonstrated by Rebecca’s business enterprise. For instance, she is able to run her business using her skills without being limited by anybody. This is evident from the way she hires and trains her employees. One insight I drew from her hiring and training of employees is that a good entrepreneur takes charge of the business and provides it with a vision and mission. It is apparent that Rebecca could have opted to hire employees who have academic qualifications and let them work using their knowledge. However, since she is a good entrepreneur she understands that her business must be unique to be competitive. The uniqueness can only be derived from a certain culture that provides guidance and assistance to employees so that they can achieve their goals.
From the interview, it was clear that Rebecca enjoys the reward of making decisions regarding that comes with being an entrepreneur. For her business to be successful and profitable, she constantly makes decisions on how to achieve success. One such decision includes maintaining a website to promote her business, advertising the business through the local radio and encouraging the word of mouth from employees and customers. Using the website is a powerful tool for marketing because it provides her with a chance to make mailing lists for loyal customers. One important lesson I learnt from Rebecca’s use of the website to promote and market her business is that techniques such as sending mails to loyal customers provide personalized attention to customers. Consequently, they feel valued and increase their loyalty to the business.
R. McCray asserted that liquor business faces the challenge of being associated with crimes such as burglary and shop lifting (personal communication, December 1, 2012). To overcome this challenge, Rebecca takes precaution by employing security personnel who ensure that the business environment is secure. The security personnel play the role of providing clients with the feeling of personal security. Consequently, customers are more confident to shop at the liquor store while employees feel secure to work in the liquor store. From Rebecca’s challenge, it is apparent that an entrepreneur is to subject to perceptional challenges. The association of the liquor business with crime was just a perception of people since it was not substantiated. As an entrepreneur, flexibility is paramount because the business environment is constantly changing. An entrepreneur has to adapt to the changes to remain relevant in the market. Security, especially in a service industry like liquor business is crucial because it contributes to the customers’ experience and overall satisfaction. The satisfaction defines whether a customer will regularly shop at the store or not. Such customers’ decision will determine the profitability of the business.
Another challenge Rebecca face are uncertain economic conditions. A down turn in general economic conditions within which the liquor business operates impacts negatively to the performance of the business. Since it is hard to predict such economic conditions, entrepreneurship becomes a risky and uncertain venture. Being an excellent entrepreneur, Rebecca has been able to recognize the risks and uncertainties associated with entrepreneurship. She has taken the step of insuring hard business to reduce the risks of failure and collapse in case of challenging economic times.
Rebecca’s perception about the success of her business is that there is a combination of factors that lead to the success of the business. Providing incentives to employees increase their motivation. Motivated employees provide customers with quality service, thus ensuring their repeat visit to the store. One of the methods used by Rebecca to motivate her employees is higher wages than industry’s average. High payment ensures that competitors cannot poach employees who have been developed by Rebecca. The success of Rebecca’s business has also thrived due to her keen interest in hiring employees with the right attitudes and skills. Moreover, training them is another method of motivation. Once employees are trained, they gained confidence about their work and are, therefore, likely to deliver quality service. Rebecca argues that using technology allows entrepreneurs from small towns to be independent of large towns. She gave an example of an entrepreneur who employs five employees on a part time basis to sell merchandise worth $16000 within a week. Some of the technological applications she cited as important to an entrepreneur are social sites. She gave her rationale for using social sites to improve business for any entrepreneur. The Rationale was that many factors such as globalization and outsourcing have affected the liquor industry in the past five years she has been in business. Social sites have, therefore, become interactive forums between sellers and their customers. The interaction established through social sites highlights weaknesses on the side of the sellers that requires improvement. Rebecca has not stopped dreaming of how to improve her liquor business. She has plans of expanding the business to rural towns. Rebecca constantly thinks of better ways to run the business so that she can match competition that continues to increase rapidly. One characteristic of an entrepreneur evident in Rebecca is dynamism. In addition to expanding the business to rural areas, she has plans of reviving her ranching business in the next five years.
In summary, the interview provides information about the rewards and challenges of being an entrepreneur. The rewards include freedom of using her skills and knowledge without being limited and decision making. Some of the decision she is free to make included the choice of employees and how to market her business. On the other hand, Rebecca’s business faces challenges such as being associated with crime and hard economic conditions. To counter the problem of insecurity, Rebecca has employed security personnel to provide a safe environment for both employees and customers. To guard the business against uncertain economic conditions, Rebecca has taken an insurance cover. She perceived incentives to employees like paying them high wages than the industry’s average as some of the factors that lead to the success of business. Moreover, using technology to interact with customers helps to build a good rapport with them through feedback and improvement of products and services. In conclusion, Rebecca has demonstrated good characteristics of an entrepreneur such is risk taking and has provided me helpful insights.